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Breast Cancer – Are You Aware Enough?

Hey there!

This is Sasa, your Health Assistant from Treat at Home. I bring useful health tips, important health news, interesting health quotes and much more!

Our world is filled with women and they light up our lives as mothers, sisters, friends and partners. Any of them, even men around us can be affected with Breast Cancer but are you aware enough?

Come, let’s get to know more.

Breast cancer is a type of cancer that can start in any part of the breast. It is the most common cancer among women population, contributing to 14% of all the cancers affecting women. Statistics point out that, there is a chance for 1 in 22 women to get this condition with the probability increasing in urban places. Cancer is a state in which cells begin to grow out of control.

It’s important to understand that most breast lumps are non cancerous (benign) and not cancerous (malignant).

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Non-cancerous breast tumors

Non-cancerous breast tumors are abnormal growths, but they do not spread outside the breast. They are not life threatening, but some types of benign breast lumps can increase a woman’s risk of getting breast cancer. So if you observe any change in your breast or if there is any lump, don’t neglect. Do consult a doctor.

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Where breast cancer starts

Breast cancers can start from different parts of the breast.

Ductal cancers

Ducts that carry milk to the nipple.

Lobular cancers

The glands that make breast milk.

Phyllodes tumor and angiosarcoma

These types of breast cancer are less common and affects the connective tissue of the breast.

Sarcomas and lymphomas

A rare type cancer which starts in other tissues of the breast such as lymphatic systems and connective tissues.

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When you should call a physician?

– When your breasts doesn’t look and feel normally

– A new lump or mass

– A painless, hard mass that has irregular edges

– A mass that is painful, tender, soft, or round edges.

– Skin dimpling (looks like an orange peel)

– Breast or nipple pain

– Nipple retraction (turning inward)

– Nipple or breast skin that is red, dry, flaking or thickened

– Nipple discharge (other than breast milk)

– Swollen lymph nodes (Sometimes a breast cancer can spread to lymph nodes under the arm or around the collar bone and cause a lump or swelling, even before the original tumor in the breast is large enough to be felt.)

– Ridge or pitted skin

– Rapid increase in breast size

It is always important to check with the doctor whenever you have these symptoms or you have a doubt.

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Breast cancers are commonly diagnosed with the help of mammograms, which can detect cancers at an earlier stage, often before they can be felt and before symptoms develop. The later stage may show signs like fatigue, weight loss, and poor appetite.

A mammogram may be recommended for men as well as women and that men can develop breast cancer also (though male breast cancer is much less common than breast cancer in women).

Risk factors

– Early menstruation (5.6%)

– Late menopause (10%)

– Hormone therapy (13%)

– Late pregnancy (15%)

– Obesity (19%)

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Breast cancer has to undergo cell division for 30 times before it can be felt. Up to the 28th cell division, neither you nor your doctor can detect it by hand. With most breast cancers, each division takes one to two months, so by the time you can feel a cancerous lump, the cancer has been in your body for two to five years. So it is always better to have healthy and hygienic life style.

To do

– Exercise regularly

– Be physically active

– Keep weight in check

– Eat fruits & vegetables

– Breastfeed, if possible

– Avoid alcohol and smoking

– Avoid birth control pills (particularly after age 35 or if you smoke)

– Avoid post-menopausal hormones

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A healthy well-balanced diet with good lifestyle choices can prevent most disease and conditions. Foods that may help lower your risk of breast cancer include Broccoli, Carrots, Beans, Berries, Cinnamon, Nuts, Olive Oil, Turmeric, Garlic, Fatty fish, Flaxseeds, Tomatoes and Citrus fruits.

Author: Dr. Manasa

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